Music Reviews

Artist: Janne Hanhisuanto
Title: Quiet Places
Format: CDS (CD Single)
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
'Quiet Places' is the most recent full length released by Janne Hanhisuanto. Quiet Places is really the most fitting title that could've been chosen for this work, and the songs themselves, even more appropriately titled. Each title reflects PERFECTLY the feel of its audio counterpart; titles like 'Dance of the Electrons,' 'Day Dreams' and 'Breathing Universe' fit the songs like gloves. The album as a whole is a great work; very thoughtful, emotional, deep. Almost the entire thing has a great retro feel to it with its synth pads, bells, moogs and just the overall feel gives off a very late 70's to mid 80's vibe, but in a very inviting way. There are only a few select moments where the retro gives way to 'dated' and loses its charm, but then seems to come right back again. It opens with the title track, a very light and beautiful piece with airy textures providing a bed for some lone high pitched, resonant tones quietly suggesting the echo of a melody. Song to song it flows almost perfectly, save for two songs that while are really great pieces of music, are just a LITTLE out of place only due to the extreme difference in their sound and feel in relation to the rest of the album. 'Some Kinda Image' has more of a contemporary feel but with an early psychedelic core. It has just a whisper of Pink Floyd beneath its wings, and boasts guitar riffs reminiscent of King Crimson, though maybe given the rest of the record, Brian Eno with Robert Fripp would be a more appropriate reference? Also, 'Romance (2)' feels again just the TINIEST bit out of place here, though not quite so much as 'Some Kinda Image.' It is a short piano piece, which is quite beautiful with notes of Beethoven somehow melded with memories of the Cure's 'Love Song.' Again, not that it doesn't belong, it's just quite a departure from the ebb and flow of the remainder of the record. I must say though, Janne does tie between the contemporary and ambience with perfect fluidity, it just takes you off guard for a moment. With its soft textures, light ambiences and occasional errie soundscapes, there isn't a dull moment within these 'Quiet Places.' There are a few slight lows, but never even close to low enough to sink completely.

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